As work professionals today, we live in exciting and changing times – what with technological advances, increased opportunities and enhanced work practices, there is much that can be accomplished whether you’re in the office or working remotely. And, this can be said, too, for when looking for viable candidates to fill a position or if you are the candidate in the market for a new job. In an effort to connect up with highly-qualified, viable candidates, many recruiters, human resources and hiring managers are using video technology to meet and interview job seekers, whether they be at the office (yes, this happens), at home or even on the road. Believe it or not, online interviews are a reality and its use has increased in the past few years.

Although we at FGD Finance believe that the best way to build professional relationships is to start with a face-to-face meeting, it’s becoming a go-to practice for recruiters, HR representatives and hiring managers to offer the option of using video-capable apps, like Skype and FaceTime, to conduct interviews.

If you get the opportunity to interview via video chat, you are much like an actor who is in charge of directing and producing your own show as well. As such, consider these important pointers:

Look the Part
Just because your interview is held in a seemingly casual format, you’ll need to be outstanding in appearance. Present yourself in your best business wear and manner (avoid colors that are too bright). Before you go on-camera, check your look in the mirror. Be well-coiffed (brush or comb your hair). Check your smile (food bits in your teeth could be embarrassing and an unwelcome distraction). For women, wear moderate make-up.

Choose the Right Scenery
It’s important that the interview is in a place that has a pleasant and business-like background with good lighting. For employers, the office or a conference room is ideal; for candidates a home office or home location that is professional in appearance. If that isn’t possible, make sure your interview is held in a place that is quiet, without disturbance or any interruption. Also, make sure your network access can handle the bandwidth needed for a digital interview. Don’t miss out on an opportunity because your network is sporadic and unreliable. And, if you’re on a laptop, it should be as close to 100% in battery power to ensure you’re on for as long as you need to be.

Rehearse the Interview Before You Go On
In front of your computer, test the video application, camera’s angle, your best sitting position, and voice volume (if you’d like, contact a friend in advance to help you set the scene). Sitting too close, looking down at the computer or appearing too far from the screen can all affect the interview. Anticipate and prepare for the most professional interaction you can have online.

Set the Stage
As you schedule the online interview, ask if you need any special tools and resources for the session. A pretty savvy technique to demonstrate work or share documents is using a screen sharing app. If your a candidate use your own account if you have one set-up or check if you can use the interviewer’s account and ask him or her to assign you as the presenter. Only open the software and files you expect to reference and do not have any other applications that could interrupt your interview enabled (such as Outlook). Additionally, if you use Skype or an instant messaging app, set your status so you inform colleagues and friends who may reach out to you that you are unavailable and cannot be disturbed.

Remember Your Lines
Don’t be too casual and laid-back in the digital interview. Listen to questions and thoughtfully respond as if you’re sitting in the same room as the candidate or interviewer. Take your time when composing your responses.

Be Aware of the Camera
While interviewing, address the camera directly as that gives the other party the impression you are truly speaking to them. Try not to stare down at the screen or, if present, watch the image of yourself.

Last, as a candidate, avoid stage fright and don’t go ‘on-the-air’ spontaneously. Sign on 15 minutes prior to the interview to ready yourself, take a deep breath to calm any nerves, and be prepared to put your best face (and your qualifications) forward.


As a leading finance and accounting staffing solutions firm, FGD Finance is committed to placing top talent at premier companies in the San Francisco/Silicon Valley Bay Area. Whether you are a candidate looking for your next career opportunity or a client in need of expertise in solving critical staffing issues, we are here to help you succeed! Call us at (925) 837-5900 or (408) 444-8040 and let’s get started on your success today!

©2015 FGD Finance